Tuesday, February 05, 2013

February 5, 2013 … Using God's Gifts

Daily Berry Patch Devotions in 2013 - Day 36

Passage of the Day: 1st Corinthians 12: 1 [NLT] … And now, dear brothers and sisters, I will write about the special abilities the Holy Spirit gives to each of us, for I must correct your misunderstandings about them.  

Contextual Study of today’s passage: 1st Corinthians, Chapter 12: 1-11 [NLT] … Go to this link … 

Reference Passage #1: Romans, Chapter 12 : [NLT] … {More on Spirit-given gifts as Paul instructed the Romans. … Use this link } … 

Reference Passage #1: Ephesians, Chapter 4; Verses 1-16 : [NLT] … {Even more on Spiritual gifts as Paul instructed the Church at Ephesus. …. Use this link } … 

My Journal for Today: In today’s highlight verse (1st Cor. 12: 1) and in the contextual readings cited above (i.e., 1st Corinthians - Chapter 12, Romans - Chapter 12, and Ephesians - Chapter 4), Paul was concerned that the churches he had helped establish really understood the dynamics of the individual Spirit-imparted gifts being used collectively and effectively in a unified church for God’s glory. I heartily suggest that you use the links I’ve provided above to go back and study a bit – probably in review – about the gifts used by God’s Spirit for us in His body to shine the light of Christ as a unified Church in this world.

Do you know what you’re Spiritual gift might be? Perhaps you’ve been given more than one gift. How does your gift or your gifts merge with others in the Body of Christ to be able – as a Body of believers – to effectively carry out Christ’s charge for us to witness of His kingdom glory in this world [see Acts 1: 8]? Because if we, as Christians, don’t have a clue about our Spirit-laden gifts, we are going to be very vulnerable to our Spiritual enemies in this life as well as weakened of God’s enabling grace in being His witnesses in the world.

For example, if you have the gift of mercy, do you know that you can have a spiritual blind-spot in being able to say “NO” to some people who might call on you to help them? With the Spirit-given gift of mercy you’re going to want to help EVERYBODY you see who has a need. But you can’t help everybody, can you? It will drain you of your Spiritual energy to try; and so, you need the help of those with the gift of Spiritual discernment to help you prioritize and choose which ones to help first, second, and so forth.

I have been blessed with a Spirit-given gift of teaching. Perhaps you can sense that as I journal here. But there are times when I need help from someone in the body of Christ with God’s gift of prophesy to help me interpret God’s word clearly, helping me to see more clearly the interpretation as I formulate how to teach God’s truth to others. Because when I fully understand God’s word, usually with the help of other discerning Christians like Os Hillman, the editor of the devotional I’m using here each morning, I can be used more effectively to impart that meaning to others, using my gifts of teaching and encouragement more powerfully.

Every Spiritual gift has an inherent strength and a potential point of weakness. When we know – really know – what our Spiritual gift is and how it works, we need to learn where that gift might be vulnerable to our own deceit-ridden hearts (again see Jeremiah 17: 9) as well as the ploys of Satan and the world, which work to dilute the power of our gifts in witnessing of Christ in the world.

When you know what your Spiritual gift is; and you know how to blend your gift into the body of Christ to use the gifts of others to cover your potential weaknesses; and when you’re using your gift blended with others in the unified Church, Spiritual sparks fly and God’s light begins to shine for God’s glory as we witness in His Name (see Matt. 5: 16). And when we’re exercising within our gift set; and we’re using \what God has given us to glorify Him, especially in accord with other Christians using their gifts, we’ll feel the power of God’s love and grace flowing through our works in His Name. It happens as it says in Ephesians 2: 10 [The Message]: ”He [God] creates each of us by Christ Jesus to join Him in the work He does, the good work He has gotten ready for us to do, work we had better be doing.” 

 I pray we all learn and know what our Spirit-given gifts are so that we can join with others in Christ’s body to be more effective as Christ-like light bearers, witnessing more effectively in His Name.

My Prayer for Today Lord, may I use the gifts of teaching and encouragement which You’ve imparted to me to be Your witness, using them in accord with Your body to be as effective as we can by for Your glory. … Amen

A Blogger’s PS: If you read from my teaching above, how do you think I did using God’s gifts of teaching and encouragement, … my two primary Spirit-imparted gifts? ... Did I use them for God’s glory this AM? Did you clearly understand what God led me to write here … enough so that you’re motivated to learn what your Spirit-given gift or gifts are and to use them for God’s glory? Let me know how I did here to teach you about Spiritual gifts. Send me an email (at willieb13@rocketmail.com) or a message on Facebook and let me know how I did.

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